Alan’s Bi-Weekly Life Of… Being a Mess

I was supposed to write a column last week? What? I’ve been suffering some allergies and overexertion and canoeing and housesitting and business planning and generally doing a half-assed job of it all, so this is my statement of fact. This bi-week I declare myself a mess.

I would cue the wonderful song “I’m a Mess” by The Murmurs, but I could not find a good legal player that didn’t require the reading of letters arranged in arcane fashion. Come over and wle can play the album.

I declare my handling of stuff a mess. I have too many things I’m ad-hoc-ing at the moment. Yes, I actually took Latin and I know what it means, but I just made that phrase up anyway. I have a pretty good sized list of things I need to take care of from a few different standpoints. I thought I would have a lot of free idle time being not fully employed, but it seems like I am still fairly mentally if not physically exhausted at the end of the day. I’m sure this is because I don’t have good plans around my schedule (thus, the ad-hoc-ery… ad hockage? eiww.) I’m going to break down my plan into a few categories and let’s see if I can make some headway.

Work. I still don’t have a full time job. I have mostly decided that I don’t want one under the previous terms and arrangement, and I’m hoping to put together my own set of work that makes me happy and best uses my skills. I’m forming my own company. This probably merits its own article, but for now, that has required me to do a lot of legwork and keep a lot of steps together (formerly in my head), and I’m finally starting to see some of those calcify into good actionable things. More on this soon, but if stuff works out I will be happily skipping to work daily in a couple months.

Ukulele. I have a bunch of songs I’ve not recorded. I’m not sure what happened, I had some good momentum releasing those last two sets of ukulele songs, but I’ve stalled on recording. I think it’s mainly because I found a good website ( that advocates a very different strumming style than the one I have pretty much self-taught myself, so I’m trying to unlearn, and I’m a bunch more unsure of how I’m sounding. I don’t want to paint myself into a corner by stating a commitment to post something in a span of time, but I should at least pick two songs for my next batch and give ’em a test record to hear how they go. I should also write up my recording process, as I think it’s somewhat interesting but probably needs some work.

Finances. Related to the work stuff, I realized that my quicken installation lived on my mac desktop… which I’ve since sold away. I backed up the quicken file, so I can rebuild it all, but Julie and I are now going to merge our accounts in software (not actually merge them… yet) so we can properly budget and separate business and personal accounts since I’m doing all that now. I need a system of receipt handling and storage and data entry.

Cooking. I go through bursts of excellence when it comes to cooking. I don’t, however, plan meals out more than a couple days, or I’m easily sidetracked when I do. I need to extend my meal planning timelines for several reasons: a. it’s generally healthier for me than any food I’d buy, b. it’s often tastier than any food I’d buy, c. it’s certainly less expensive than a dinner out, d. I like cooking, and really don’t do it enough.

Cleaning. There’s a desk that has over a year of “oh, I’ll just put it here for now” stuff on it that is probably about to break from the weight of the weird myriad junk on it. I have one of those plastic bags they put all your dashboard and door pocket stuff inside when you get your car detailed except in that back is another bag with the stuff from the prior time. I have a garage that has boxes that were not unpacked when we moved into the house almost five years ago.

Exercise. I have been exercising despite not posting the statistics as religiously as I was. This is all from being too fluid and lax about scheduling it. Despite my weight moving back into the 160s, I definitely am looking better in the mirror than even when I was in the low 150s because I had pretty poor muscle tone. My body must be just sneakier about where it’s storing the fat because my fat percentage hasn’t moved down that much. If I can be more deliberate about the plan, it will work.

Friends and Family. Being a good friend or family member is more than liking people’s facebook status or retweeting who they saw on the bus. I have to plan more time with the people I care about.

The only thing I don’t mind running without a map is my relationship with Julie. Discovering how much more I love her every day seems to be best when the two of us can just spend time with each other.

I’m sure I’m missing something, but that’s a good stab. If I can just hold onto these and put some stuff in motion, I’ll get there. Thanks, and I’ll see you next bi-week.

One Comment

  1. Julie

    Just to get the momentum going, you could do one thing in each of the seven categories each day. (your daily checks!) If you note what you do, you’ll find out soon enough if you’re feeling blocked on any areas…and it’ll be good motivation to figure out how to get un-blocked.

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